Mastering Multiple Leadership Styles: The Key to Effective Leadership

Integrating and being able to use multiple leadership styles will help you to lead better. You cannot just choose one and only use it, as different situations require different approaches.

Let’s look at the two main leadership styles and how you can use them both in your leadership.

The Traditional Way

Everyone knows the traditional way of leadership. The leader takes charge, makes the decision, and the team follows.

The benefit of this type of leadership is the leader takes charge and sets the direction. As the visionary behind it all, it is important that the leader takes charge and shares their vision. This way of leading is also much faster and allows for a team to move forward quickly.

The downside of this method is, not everyone has a say, making your plans less agile.

The Modern Way

The modern way of leading involves more of a democratic style where everyone in the team has input. Rather than a leader coming to the table with a plan, a leader will bring a problem to the table and ask everyone how they would solve it.

This allows a team to be nibble, agile, and forward thinking as they involve everyone’s capabilities. It also creates the perfect environment for coaching and mentoring the growth of your team.

The downside is making a decision can sometimes take longer.

The Integrated Way

As a leader, you cannot simply choose one way and stick with it. There are times where you need to take charge and make the decision, but there are other times where being able to take advantage of everyone’s input can help you to find new and innovative ways to solve a problem.

A good leader will oscillate between the two leadership methods depending on the situation.

So how do you become good at oscillating?

Well the first step is to have great self awareness. You need know what you are good at and what you need to work on. Most leaders are very good at one type of leadership but need to work on the other. Identify the one you are weaker at and work on it.

The first step is to read and learn from other leaders, but the best way to learn is practice. Practice through coaching and through implementing what you have learned.

Another great way to learn is through reverse mentoring. This is when you get mentored by a junior staff member. You choose a specific topic that you are weaker in, and work with a junior staff member who can mentor you in it.

This way you can learn from someone else both on a specific topic and a new style of mentoring.

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